August 8, 2009

...back to square one...

so, that new format i tried to make work? didn't work. my schedule is way too hectic to be trying to update my joint that regularly. let's just pretend it never happened... cool?

what's new, what's new... hmmm... let's start with the london trip. i went out to london with pnoy apparel during the weekend of july 17th for 2 shows. the first set was a short set for a festival attended by about 20,000 people, the barrio fiesta. this is europe's biggest annual festival of philippine culture and the event didn't disappoint. deep foundation went up first to set the pace, and set the pace they did. with only a short amount of time, they managed to bring out a singer and throw in a posse cut of their hit single, "children of the sun." this is when i jumped on stage to make the transition. i wasn't sure how i would be received in london. wasn't sure how my politics (or the way i delivered my politics) were going to translate in the uk, but my motto has always been, "fuck it, when you get a chance to have your voice heard, speak truth." i started slow. talked about america's war on islam, imperialist interest, blah, blah... then i moved toward the philippine government's violations on human rights under the reign of gloria macapagal arroyo. guess what? the filipino community in london know what's up! from my perspective on stage, the crowd was with me. i was elated. the rest of the festival was spent hustling gear at the pnoy apparel booth and getting to know the community. our hosts, london baby and her pops, uncle rusty took care of us during our stay and i honestly don't think the trip would have been a complete success without them. after breaking down for the first day of the festival, we rushed to hopefully catch a shower before the next gig, shirt the kids!

now, because the crew was primarily from the states, we didn't understand the dj's selection -- we found out that funky house is the business in london, so we weren't that thrilled about the tunes being played as the crowd gathered into the club. after a brief delay, the show got started. london locals kyd, aziatik, ningning and d-rexx pulled the trigger with a great set. london baby killed it with a few of her joints right afterward and then mc zani, the 2008 uk beatbox champion, showed us why he holds that belt. zani tore it down! how do you follow up someone who had the crowd up in arms? with another local spitter, clencha! this dude had the floor shaking with his fusion of london rude boy and straight emcee skill. now the americans. deep foundation hit the floor with one of the best performances i've seen from them (even minus one of their hard hitters, ro - if ro was there, i might not have had a chance to get on)! last -- me. typical bam set.

the night ended with me celebrating my birthday in london with my birthday comrade, jenn! birthday cake, shots, etc. everyone who made the trip's success possible is familia now. zar and i hopped the plane home tallying up a total of 7 hours of sleep in 4 days. easy.

after a very short recovery with the boy and his moms, it was back to the grind. as the program director for this year's festival of philippine arts and culture, my plate is so full its starting to crack in half. that's a whole 3 page blog, so we'll leave it at that.

daluyong! the daluyong consultation was another amazing 3 day event with kasamas, family and the park's finest bbq. the conference touched on issues ranging from forced migration, systemic racism and strengthening solidarity among youth and students here in the states and back home in the philippines. rewarding 3 days. amazing job by the organizers! thank you to all the organizations that came out to make this possible: kabataang maka-bayan pro-people youth, ugnayan nj/ny, bagwis collective, damayan, gabriella network, jfav, committee on pilipino issues and all the youth and students who found the time and energy to take part in it.

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